Saturday 24 February 2018

Mum fired from job over pregnancy awarded €11,000

Jacqueline Gannon, of Grange Abbey Grove, Donaghmede, Dublin,
Jacqueline Gannon, of Grange Abbey Grove, Donaghmede, Dublin,

Saurya Cherfi

A MOTHER who was sacked from her job because she became pregnant has been awarded €11,429 compensation.

Judge Alison Lindsay, in a reserved judgment, said Jacqueline Gannon, a former secretary with MD Property Management Ltd, would still be working for the company had she not become pregnant.

The judge, awarding her €10,000 compensation and €1,429 for her loss of earnings, said she did not accept the company's claim Ms Gannon was let go because there was not any part-time work available within the company after she returned from her maternity leave.

Ms Gannon, of Grange Abbey Grove, Donaghmede, Dublin, had sued the company at the Circuit Civil Court on the grounds of discrimination. Opposing the claim, the company alleged it did not have enough hours and Ms Gannon had wanted to leave.

Ms Gannon had told her barrister, Amy O'Donoghue, that she was sacked less than 18 months after joining the company and only a week after returning from her maternity leave.

She also told the court that she had been threatened with the loss of her job because of her pregnancy. She added that she had been "worried and stressed out" after meetings with her employer in March 2011 about her pregnancy.

In evidence to the court, company director Mark Dunleavy denied Ms Gannon had been fired and said she had not been replaced. He told the judge that MD Property Management, of Upper Baggot Street, Dublin, had endured problems caused by the economic downturn when she was let go.

He told the court that Ms Gannon was hired in July 2010 for six months on a part-time basis but had been kept on because of extra work in the company. She was not given a written contract. Ms Gannon denied she had been appointed initially only for six months.

The court also heard that Mr Dunleavy signed a Maternity Leave form for Ms Gannon with a return date of December 15, 2011, so that she would get her maternity benefits.

In her judgment, Judge Lindsay said she accepted Ms Gannon never said that she would not come back to work and that she had been told she would get full-time or part-time work.

"I do not accept that Ms Gannon resigned," the judge said. She also awarded Ms Gannon her legal costs.

Irish Independent

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